The OceanTraining project is pleased to invite you to participate in the 1st International Conference on Ocean Education and Training 2023 (OceanTraining2023).

Through five leading themes, this international and open conference will bring together marine scientists, educators, (joint) educational programme coordinators, graduate students and non-academic stakeholders from a range of disciplines to discuss the most recent innovations, trends, challenges encountered and solutions adopted in the fields of Ocean Education and Learning, with a focus on digital education. 

The conference aims to be dynamic and innovative, by providing a mixture of oral presentations and workshops. It is anticipated that the international and multigenerational nature of this event will foster knowledge exchange, networking and new collaborations.

The conference will be hosted at the Ghent University Museum (GUM), in Ghent, Belgium.


" : a toolbox for digital ocean education" will develop a set of digital resources aimed for international education programmes in the field of Ocean Sciences.

With a consortium of 4 universities we plan to develop existing and new ideas which should support the targetted international education programmes. In addition we foresee that the outcomes of this project will also be usable on a broader scale (for example in the context of Life Long Learning initiatives or global capacity develop in the area of Ocean Science).

 The toolbox will entail four categories of digital education instruments:

1. We will make available a set of fundamental online asynchronous courses in the field of Ocean Sciences. These courses will be unique in the sense that they are jointly developed and accepted by a consortium of European Universities.

2. An essential result linked to first point is a methodology for improvement of the online courses based on a internal review system. This methodology will be adapted to each of the courses developed and hosted in the toolbox.

3. A Via the so called "Virtual Ocean lab" we want to gather existing virtual and remote alternatives which can be implemented in order to achieve learning outcomes linked to practical and field work.  

4. We want to initiate the development of a central registry for online marine education resources. Currently a lot of educational resources are being or having being developed all over the place. Many of these are not traceable because of the lack of a centralized repository in which educators can register their resources.



Project activities

The toolbox, with the above listed four main components, will be hosted through the portal. This portal which has been developed by Ghent University, since 2011, plays a coordinating role in the field of blue international education. The project targets in first place challenges faced by international graduate programmes. The four components are:


A fully online set of fundamental Ocean science courses (BASE) valid for 30 ECTS will support graduate programmes seeking for good online alternatives for local programmes. The online setup allows geographically spread students to participate from a distance, but still offers opportunities, thanks to the activating and engaging learning methodologies, to exchange and connect with peers and teachers.


The format of Short Online Courses (SUPPORT) will be used in second package to provide supporting learning content answering very specific learning needs. A diverse student community with a diversified background does need many additional resources in order to be able to follow regular courses. SOCS will be developed using a wide range of formats in order to provide clear answers to these needs.


The Virtual Ocean Lab (EXPLORE) will bring together digital learning techniques and tools which may serve as alternatives for the regular field and practical experiences available in most Ocean Graduate programmes. 


Lastly a supporting publication tool (UNITE) for teachers investing time and energy in the development of digital learning will be initiated. This tool, in the format of a digital journal, will allow teachers to post their resources in a citable and peer-reviewed format. This tool should increase visibility of digital learning resources and should also make them retrievable.

Project results


A fully online set of six fundamental Ocean science courses (BASE) valid for 30 ECTS were redesigned, updated and delivered in the Moodle learning environment. All six courses were approved and made available across the 11 partner universities in the IMBRSea.

Six fully online interactive courses which are outlined as fundamental courses in ocean sciences:

-Marine Ecology
-Quantitative Methods in Marine Sciences
-Marine Policy and Governance
-Marine GIS and Spatial Planning
-Marine Genomics


A set of 43 Short online courses (SOCs) were designed to support basic courses and to expand student's background on ocean life learning and supporting fundamental courses. The SOCs are deliver in the Moodle learning environment.


-An inventory of digital learning tools within the portal was developed, in this catalogue different tools are described and documented.
-Physical toolkit (arduino sensors) was developed together with supporting materials for a user-friendly integration of these technologies in several practical and field experiments. The supporting materials are deliver in the Moodle learning environment. 
-One virtual excursion (BOGA TOUR) was developed, with this we aim to provide technological solutions to host some other tools as documented in the inventory.


-A synthesis document to review referencing academic resources for marine programmes was prepared. 
- A prototype platform was developed to complete a prototype catalogue to distribute resources generated by the partners of the project and partners within IMBRSea.


As a multiplier event, the 1st International Conference on Ocean Education and Training was designed.